Greg Trooper / Cindy Bullens at the me & thee coffeehouse
Rarely has there been a more aptly named singer/songwriter than Greg Trooper. Over three decades, the New Jersey native has soldiered on through the victories and setbacks unique to a career dedicated to music, proving through gestures large and small that he's one of our best. It's evident in the company he keeps, the critics who praise his recordings, the fans who invest in his shows and the artists who learn his songs, wishing they'd written them. It is most evident in what Amazon.com calls his "catalog of superbly crafted albums." This impressive discography testifies for an artist who has always served the song and the music above all other things.
Raised in the shore town of Little Silver, NJ Trooper became enthralled by the greater New York area's rich music scene. He discovered a sort of holy musical trinity in the work of Otis Redding, Bob Dylan, and Hank Williams, with their guiding lights of passion, literary dexterity and plainspoken honesty. It's one reason Trooper's music feels equally informed by Memphis soul, Greenwich Village folk and Nashville twang.
Trooper has made an impact on the music scenes in all the places he's lived since leaving home after high school: Austin, Texas, Lawrence, Kansas, New York and Nashville. His albums have demonstrated creative vision as well as a collaborator's heart. Americana star Buddy Miller produced 1998's 'Popular Demons' album, while soul legend Dan Penn steered 2005's extraordinary 'Make It Through This World'. In the studio and on the road, Trooper's colleagues have come from roots music's most rarified circles: Larry Campbell (Dylan), Garry Tallent (Bruce Springsteen), Kenneth Blevins (John Hiatt), as well as headliners like Maura O'Connell and Bill Lloyd. His songs have been recorded by Vince Gill, Steve Earle, Billy Bragg and Robert Earl Keen, among others.
In a review of his live album 'Between A House And A Hard Place', music critic Barry Mazor said that Trooper "sings with a clarity of purpose and a variety of effect that few in the acoustic world match." Billboard magazine has called him "an artist of considerable insight and passion." Nashville music critic Robert K. Oermann has said Trooper's "songs and delivery grab you by the throat." Fans know a voice of grit and experience signing songs in which they recognize themselves. They also know that come the proverbial hell or high water, Greg will still be forging forward, trooper that he is.
Two-time Grammy nominee Cindy Bullens began her music career touring with Elton John and in the studio with mega-hit songwriter/producer Bob Crewe. In 1979 she released her debut solo album Desire Wire (United Artists) and scored a breakthrough hit with her song "Survivor", garnering a Grammy nomination for Best Rock Vocal Performance. The year prior, she was nominated for a Grammy for her three lead vocals as part of the Grease movie soundtrack album.
In the 1980's, Cindy released two more critically acclaimed albums Steal The Night (Casablanca) and Cindy Bullens (MCA), while largely setting aside her musical pursuits to raise her children. In the mid 90's, Cindy began spending time in Nashville, writing with the hottest young songwriters such as Radney Foster, with whom she penned the hit Country song, "Hammer and Nails." Such diverse artists as Texas blues diva Sarah Brown, New Orleans soul queen Irma Thomas, and pop-country superstars the Dixie Chicks have all recorded Cindy's songs.
She returned to recording in 1999 with the release of Somewhere Between Heaven And Earth (Artemis), a heartfelt work dedicated to her 11 year-old daughter Jessie, who died of cancer in 1996. This award-winning album includes guest performances by Cindy's friends Bonnie Raitt, Lucinda Williams, Rodney Crowell, Bryan Adams, and Beth Nielsen Chapman. Her daughter Reid performs a stunning duet with Cindy as well. 2001's Neverland (Artemis) her next album, co-produced by Cindy with Twangtrust partner Ray Kennedy, is a strong roots-rock album features guest appearances by John Hiatt, Steve Earle, and Emmylou Harris, among others. In late 2005, Cindy released dream #29 (LetsPLAY), also by co-produced with Cindy and Ray Kennedy, an album of up-tempo rockers and introspective ballads -featuring a duet with Delbert McClinton, and appearances by Boston Red Sox knuckleballer Tim Wakefield, and her old pal Elton John playing rollicking piano on the title track.
In the summer of 2001, Cindy collaborated with Tony Award-winning producer and director John Wulp on Islands, a musical about life on North Haven, an island off the coast of Maine where Cindy has a home. With songs by Cindy and book by John Wulp, "Islands" was first produced in May of 2000 with a local cast of non-professionals portraying themselves. The musical received much acclaim both statewide and nationally as a unique story and project, and as a result the original cast of "Islands" debuted to a sold out audience at the New Victory Theater on Broadway in Spetember of 2001.
In 2007, Cindy formed the super-trio The Refugees with Wendy Waldman and Deborah Holland (www.therefugeesmusic.com). Touted as "Crosby, Stills and Nash with humor", The Refugees are tearing it up live across the US and Canada. Their debut album Unbound (Wabuho) was released in January of 2009 to rave reviews. Their sophomore effort is due out in Spring 2011.
Cindy's new solo recording, Howling Trains and Barking Dogs (MC Records), is a collection of her 90's Nashville collaborations. Her co-writers include Radney Foster, Bill Lloyd, Matraca Berg, Kye Fleming and Mary Ann Kennedy, and Al Anderson. It was released on MC Records (Koch) on June 29, 2010 to rave reviews! She continues to tour extensively in the US, Canada and Europe. She has also played the National Folk Festival in Australia.
Cindy Bullens also actively raises money for The Jessie B-C Fund (www.jessiefund.org) a charity, in honor of her daughter Jessie, dedicated to help kids with cancer and their families.
me & thee coffeehouse (View)
28 Mugford St.
Marblehead, MA 01945
|Kid Friendly: Yes!|
|Wheelchair Accessible: Yes!|